I knew that Christopher Lee was a tough and scary dude, but Bela Lugosi? That old guy with the accent who was in Plan 9 From Outer Space? I did not expect this, but man, I’ve got to admire him now.
By World War II, Hungarian dictator Miklos Horthy allied with Adolf Hitler and the Nazis. In opposition, Lugosi helped form the Hungarian-American Council for Democracy, calling for “Nazism to be wiped out everywhere.”
As a member of American-Hungarian Relief Inc., Lugosi was a keynote speaker at an Aug. 28, 1944, rally in Los Angeles. He demanded Washington rescue Hungarian Jewish refugees, pressure Horthy’s Nazi-puppet regime and easing immigration restrictions.
Dr. Rafael Medoff and J. David Spurlock wrote, “He may have portrayed savage villains on the silver screen, but in real life Béla Lugosi raised his voice in protest against the savage persecution of the Jews in his native Hungary.” (Jewish Ledger, Jan. 3, 2011)